|Reg Grundy Organization|
Gambit is based on a U.S. format of the same name, where two married couples must come close to make a 21 without going over.
The object of the game was that of blackjack: come as close to 21 as possible without going over (or "busting"). As in blackjack, the cards 2 through 10 were worth their face value; face cards (Kings, Queens and Jacks) counted as 10 and an Ace could count as either 1 or 11.
The host asked a series of questions, usually multiple-choice or true-false, to two married couples. The couple who buzzed in and answered the question correctly won control of the next card from the top of a deck of over-sized (but otherwise regulation) playing cards. The first card was shown before the first question, but cards thereafter were presented face down.
Once a couple gained control of a card they had the option of adding it to their own hand or passing it to their opponents. After a couple received any card (whether by choosing to take it themselves or by having a card passed to them from their opponents) they could elect to freeze if they were in the lead (neither team was permitted to freeze when the two were tied), preventing them from receiving any additional cards. This rule prevented their opponents from passing cards to them in order to strategically force them to bust.
Once this happened, the other couple answered questions until one of the following conditions occurred:
Conditions for winningEdit
- Reaching 21, which not only won the game, but the Gambit Jackpot, which increased at the start of each edition.
- Having their opponents exceed 21 ("bust"), even if the winners had no cards.
- Freezing, and then having the opponents miss a question before getting a higher score without going over 21.
- Having the opponents freeze, and then getting a higher score without going over 21.
Each game won was worth money. The first team to win two games won the match and advanced to the bonus round.
Bonus Round: The Gambit BoardEdit
For the bonus round, the winning couple played the Gambit Bonus Board. They faced a large game board with 21 numbered cards. Each card/screen concealed a prize; along with each prize the couple chose, they received a card added to their hand from the deck.
The game ended in one of three ways:
- The couple elected to stop before reaching 21 (especially if they feared the next card would push them over 21 or in some instances, if they won a desirable prize they wanted to keep) and keep all the prizes they've chosen to that point.
- Going over 21, at which point they lost everything from the board.
- Reaching 21 exactly, wherein they won a new car as well as the Gambit Jackpot and the prizes selected.